The Media Agency Model isn't working

eBay advertising boss, Rob Basset said yesterday to the industry. “A hard push by media agencies to “commoditise” media succeeded at their own expense.” As reported in Campaign Magazine 21st March 2018. Ed looks into this issue to see what needs to change.

Before we dive in, let’s have a look what a media agency is.

What is a Media Agency?

A media agency advises the best way for a client to reach their customers in a positive light. This involves the planning of all types of media. (The How, Where and When).

DrivenMedia's Experiences

DrivenMedia is a media owner we are trying to get media agencies to put truck advertising on your media plan.

We do not have great success going to clients through their agencies and we are going to share why we think this is.

  • The model just isn’t transparent.

Many media agencies and agencies have bulk brought media space such as outdoor, tv etc. They have an incentive to recommend these to clients rather than an unusual or new medium that might suit the brand or brief better.

So in our case every media agency we speak to have already agreed with one of the Outdoor media company to buy a certain number of panels or to buy a certain amount of space, this gives them a favourable rate and a juicy bonus. So when a client comes to them and it comes down to a 48 sheet national campaign vs a national truck advertising campaign, guess which one the media agency is going to recommend? (That’s if we even get on the media plan!)

  • Profit lead rather than client lead. 

Now, we’re not saying you run an agency expecting not to earn any money, we suggest a client who you’ve delighted and exceeded expectations because that off the wall, radical advertising campaign you ran, delivered a higher ROI or better result (and you took a little less commision on), is, in the long run, better than a quick buck.

Increased client retention, your case studies become stronger and you stand out.

Other Points from the article

  • Economic testing that Proved “Tv Advertising works” is flawed. It overlooks the fact that brans have increased stocks in the run up to the advert. – Rob Basset, eBay Advertising Boss.
  • “I would love it if there was more of a move to thinking a bit harder about media choices and putting craft and analysis at the heart of it” – Rob Basset, eBay Advertising Boss.
  • Lazy brands/Media Agencies lead to lousy ads that annoy. Jon Wilkins,  executive chairman, Karmarama.
  • “People don’t remember media placements, they remember ads”-Charlotte Moore, digital content director, Marie Claire

What Could Media Agencies Do Differently?

We’ve covered how an agency could evolve to become client lead and the benefits they will see. To summerise.

  • Book media that’s better for the client, not your commision.
  • Activity embrace new media and help it become what your clients need/ are looking for.
  • Look beyond the traditional, the answer isn’t always TV, Radio and 48 and 96 Sheets.
  • Making your client stand out, if your job. Creativity and innovation should be at the heart of your agency.

About Ed

  • Ed Hollands

A young entrepreneur, Founder of DrivenMedia. As seen on Dragons Den successfully winning investment from the dragons.

Passionate about advertising, logistics and entrepreneurship.